Tune-up Software: Not the Answer for Slow Computers
Are you tired of your sluggish computer? Have you been looking for ways to speed it up? If you think a tune-up software will help, that’s not the best solution. There’s no legitimate tune-up software on the market with proven results of better system performance. However, there are many PUPs available, potentially unwanted programs, which, while not classified as viruses or malware (malicious software), can be detrimental to the computer.
What does tune-up software actually do?
Very little that is helpful for your computer. Some may include tools that clean out temporary files, but most just want users to pay for unnecessary products. Tune-up software may itself slow down the computer, especially if it launches automatically at start-up and runs in the background. This redirects computer resources from other, more important tasks. Any of its helpful aspects can be accomplished manually or with other, legitimate software.
What you can do instead of using a tune-up software:
First, distinguish whether the sluggishness only occurs on the Internet, or if the operating system functions are dragging. If the Internet is the only problem, especially when loading media like photos and video, it may be a problem with your Internet Service Provider (ISP), (e.g. Verizon, Comcast, Service Electric).
To check this, run a speed test to see if you’re getting the speeds you’re paying for. Use Netflix’s tester at fast.com to find your download speed. You can also try speedtest.net, (but be sure not to click on any of the site’s ads). Run the tests multiple times, and if you’re consistently getting significantly lower rates than your package should provide, contact your ISP. There could be a problem with the signal, modem, and/or router.
A browser may also be slow if you have unnecessary toolbars, a hijacked homepage, extra plug-ins, or a full cache and too many cookies. Go to your browser’s settings to clear the cache and remove cookies, understanding that this could erase data like browser history, saved passwords, or remembered logins.
CCleaner is once helpful maintenance tool for cleaning out things like browser cache, cookies, and temporary files. You can also manually go through and delete old files you no longer need on your hard drive.
Run a scan with your antivirus program. Remember that one and only one antivirus should be installed on your computer, as multiple antivirus programs can cancel each other out. Quarantine or remove any threats the scan detects. Malware and viruses often slow down a system significantly.
If slowness continues…
If the overall operation of your computer is slow, sluggish in booting up, logging in, opening and closing programs, saving changes in programs and so forth, you may have deeper issues. Perhaps the computer is downloading and installing updates. You can check the “updates” section under settings to see if this is the case. If so, leave your computer on and either logged in or locked so these updates can complete.
A deeper issue may be a failing hard drive. It takes the drive a longer time to access data when it begins to fail. You may hear clicking or grinding in the drive or notice the fans running louder. Should you received any kind of “hard disk” or “no boot disk found” errors, the hard drive is in trouble. If the computer is still operational, retrieve or back up any data you may need and take the computer to a professional for diagnosis.
Using these tips will be far more effective than downloading a spurious tune-up software. If you don’t feel comfortable with any of these tasks or are still experiencing problems, an IT professional can perform a tune-up or diagnose further issues.